Jul 10, 2018

Social Media Demographics Guide for Digital Marketers

by Digital Marketing Institute

Whether you’re an experienced digital marketer or brand new to the industry, chances are you know just how vital social media marketing is in your practice. However, social media is changing daily, and faster than ever. It seems as though there are updates and changes in popularity between demographics on an almost weekly basis.

As a digital marketer, how can you work to better understand user behavior on various social media platforms, the differences between them, and what platforms best benefit yours or your clients’ businesses?

This is where the magic of social media demographics comes in. By paying attention to the variances in who uses certain social media channels, where in the world they are located, and what content they are interested in, you can work to develop a best-in-class digital marketing strategy and obtain optimal results during a social media campaign.

What Are Social Media Demographics?

Social media demographics, in short, are the varying audiences that regularly utilize specific social media platforms. Digital marketers who have an understanding of these demographics can cultivate social media strategies that align with the needs and habits of varying demographics on each social media network.

For example, it’s not often that you’ll find a Millennial searching for the best seniors cruises in the Mediterranean on Facebook or a dad who barely uses a computer looking for helpful content marketing tips on Twitter. Social media demographics are of immense value to those looking to invest in social media advertising, as well as those who want to stretch out their marketing budget by using social media networks to their fullest potential.

Registering for these social media networks is a free service, so for those just growing their business or who want to save money, learning how to use social media networks optimally to cultivate a community without spending money is key.

Dive into the following demographics of the major social media networks to better understand the platforms that your target demographic is most likely to use on a regular basis.

Social Media Demographics of Major Social Media Networks

Thanks to Hootsuite and Hubspot we can share the following social media demographics of most of the major social media networks that are regularly used in the present digital atmosphere. These include:


LinkedIn: As a digital networking service provider for professionals who work both on and offline, LinkedIn is the perfect social media platform for leaders and working professionals to make connections and nurture professional relationships. With the ability to post and seek jobs and share informational content, LinkedIn is popular with people between the ages of 25 and 49. With 546 million registered members, LinkedIn is beneficial for the career success of countless members. According to HootSuite, there is an equal representation of both men and women on LinkedIn.

If you’re trying to reach professionals solely based in the USA, you may have some issues, as over 70% of LinkedIn users live outside of the country, with registered users from over 200 countries. Depending on your digital marketing strategy, it may be useful to know that users on this platform are most likely to live in urban areas.

If you’re attempting to cultivate professional connections and grow your network for yourself or a client, LinkedIn is the most likely platform to yield these results.


Facebook: In recent months, Facebook has been under fire for its use of unauthorized user data. However, it still manages to be the largest social media platform in terms of users, with over 2.13 billion active users logging on each month. In the United States, around 68% of adults are registered on Facebook, with more women logging on than men.

If you’re a digital marketer targeting an audience in the United States, it may be useful to note that the majority of adults who use the platform make over $75,000 every year and have a college degree or further education.

Facebook is a great platform for targeting Millennials and those in the Generation X age demographics, with the latter spending around 7 hours each week on Facebook.

Because Facebook has such a wide reach, it’s a vital component of any digital marketing strategy. Whether you have an e-commerce site or are a global business, Facebook allows you to reach a global audience, while boosted Facebook posts mean that you can target extremely specific demographics and geographical areas to optimize your digital marketing reach.


Instagram: Now owned by Facebook, Instagram is a photo-based platform that is home to collections of well-curated images. For digital marketers, the use of hashtags on the platform is a dream. Not only can you expand the reach of your content with the use of hashtags, you can cultivate relationships and align your brand with an entire online community that would have been harder to find pre-Instagram.

Every day, 500 million out of the 800 million registered users log on to browse friends photos, like pictures, and share their own content. Instagram Stories is the newest feature to hit the platform, where users can instantly share brief snippets of their life or post photos that are shown for a limited time.

With 90% of the Instagram user base being under the age of 35, this platform is great for targeting content meant for Millennial audiences. It has quickly become a popular platform for brands, as brand influencers can share sponsored content, while professional visual content can be shared easily to build brand loyalty and personality.


Pinterest: Pinterest is another visual-based platform where users can “pin” content that is relevant to their interests. These digital pinboards can be public or private, allowing users to create a digital space that revolves around their unique personality, likes, and interests.

It’s another popular platform for brands and retailers, as “buyable pins” have made their park. If you’re a digital marketer for an e-commerce brand, it’s critical that your client has an active presence on Pinterest. Stunningly, 90% of those who pin weekly make some purchase decisions on the platform, browsing primarily on their mobile device. Geographically, Pinterest is the only social media platform that attracts mostly those in suburban US users.

In terms of how long a post will stay relevant or visible to an audience, the half-life of a pin is reported to be 151,200 minutes!


Twitter: Twitter has been around for a while, and in its time, has grown a dedicated user base of individuals, even those in the political community. Twitter has around 317 million monthly users, with the majority of the gender demographic identifying as male. In terms of users in the United States, around 1 in 4 reports using Twitter.

Generally speaking, Twitter is most popular with a younger demographic, with 45% of Americans who are between 18 and 24 using the platform. After 18 to 24-year-olds the second largest age demographic is of those between 25 and 29 years of age. However, 53% of Twitter users do not post updates. Rather, they scroll through their feed and interact with others through comments and post likes.

From a digital marketing standpoint, Twitter offers the use of hashtags to ensure your content reaches a wider audience, and the option to promote valuable posts for advertising purposes.

Snapchat: As the social media platform that made face filters popular, Snapchat is primarily used by those between 18 and 34 years of age, followed by people between the ages of 25 and 29.

With 187 million daily users, Snapchat is a key part of a digital marketing strategy for brands and businesses aimed at attracting a younger following and audience.

YouTube: With humble beginnings on Valentine’s Day of 2005, YouTube has become the second largest social media platform when measuring reach, which makes it key for future-forward digital marketing strategies.

Over 75% of Americans use the platform, with over 1.5 billion viewers globally. Every minute, there are over 2 million video views. YouTube even boasts a larger reach for those between 18 and 49 years of age than cable networks in the United States.

In terms of digital marketing, YouTube is watched by people in over 88 countries worldwide, making it a great platform for global reach.

Using Social Demographics in your Digital Marketing Strategies

Whether you’re a digital marketer by trade or simply want to increase your reach as a self-employed business owner, utilizing social media demographic information can help you target your marketing strategies and make the most out of your budget. This is especially true for those looking to invest in social media advertising as a part of their social selling strategy.

Digital advertising can be costly, so you want to ensure that you’re choosing a platform on which your advertising efforts will yield the highest return. However, it’s vital that you familiarize yourself with the demographics of all major social media platforms, as the way in which people communicate and find communities online is always changing.

By staying up-to-date with social media demographics, you can optimize your digital marketing strategy and use your time online effectively.

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